Twenty-seven national and local media people, farmers and members of the Indonesia Biosafety Commission participated in a three-day visit to corn and sugarcane research stations and farms in three regencies in East Java, Indonesia on 22 – 24 November 2014.
Jointly organized by the BIOTROP-hosted Indonesian Biotechnology Information Center (IndoBIC), National Outstanding Farmers’ Association (NOFA), and CropLife Indonesia, the visit was aimed to provide the participants an overview of the corn and sugarcane seed industries in Indonesia. The participants visited Syngenta seed station and PT Perkebunan Nusantara XI in Pasuruan and farmers’ corn fields in Probolinggo and Jember.
In Jember, the participants received briefing from Mr. Winarno Tohir, chairman of NOFA, and Mr. Arum Sabil, chairman of the Sugarcane Farmers’ Association (APTRI) about the challenges of achieving sugar self-sufficiency and the role of technology in agriculture in Indonesia. Likewise, Prof. Agus Pakpahan, chairman of Indonesia Biosafety Commission discussed the need for disseminating the latest production technologies to farmers to attain food sovereignty in the country.
At the Syngenta’s Research station and PT. Perkebunan Nusantara XI, discussions among farmers and media people were focused on agriculture biotechnology and its applications in obtaining higher crop yield and control of pests and diseases especially in sugarcane.
The event was supported by BIOTROP and the International Services for The Acquisition of Agri-Biotech Applications (ISAAA).